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Lidia Bastianich is an Emmy award-winning television host, best-selling cookbook author, and restaurateur. She has held true to her Italian roots and culture, which she proudly and warmly invites her fans to experience.
 
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Dried Oregano
Oregano is an herb that is very prominent in Italian American cuisine. When Italian immigrants arrive...
 
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Lidia on Rai Tre/Slang
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Lidia's Commonsense Italian Cooking
Lidia brings viewers on a road trip into the heart of Italian-American cooking.
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September 21, 2014
Dried Oregano

Oregano is an herb that is very prominent in Italian American cuisine. When Italian immigrants arrived in America they were looking for the sweetness of tomatoes grown in the warmer climate of Italy and the variety of fresh herbs that could be grown almost year round. In America it was difficult to find familiar ingredients, so by necessity Italian American cuisine became a cuisine of adaptation; they made do with what they could find and dry oregano played a large role in this new cuisine. Italians love using fresh herbs, but oregano intensifies when dried and imparts a lot of flavor and freshness. It accentuates the flavor of tomato and is also great to use throughout the year when the colder climate does not allow for herbs to grow. Oregano has been used from ancient times, popular in the cuisine of ancient Greece and Rome in salads and rubbed on grilled meat and fish. I often buy filet of white fish for my grandchildren and bake it in a casserole with oregano tossed with some bread crumbs and olive oil on top for a healthier version of fish sticks. The word oregano is derived from Greek, meaning “joy of the mountain,” and truthfully, its strong flavor makes it a joy to use in the kitchen.